Running Shoes: Everything You Need To Know

Running Shoes: Everything You Need To Know

To become a better athlete, you need to invest in a pair of jogging shoes. Today, we'll discuss everything you need to know about them. Investing in a pair of running shoes will increase your speed, agility, and overall performance when you run.

Our main goal is to teach you certain aspects that make up a running shoe. This will help you become a more informed buyer when you have to create a purchase. By the end of this article, you'll have enough information to get a pair of running shoes that suits your needs.

What Are Running Shoes

When running, you need a pair of shoes that can support your feet. Every running shoe comes with padding on the heel and the ball of the foot. Because of this, it allows users to run faster without causing damage to the joints.

What are Running Shoes?

Running shoes can handle up to 3 times your body weight each time your foot impacts the ground. If you plan on running at least more than two days a week, then you should plan on getting a good pair of running shoes.

Why Should I Buy A Pair Of Running Shoes?

Foot protection is one of the main reasons to buy a pair of running shoes. They provide the best protection for your feet, body, and legs from repeated press from your feet each time you run. Also, running shoes come with extra built-in features to help you repeatedly run without over exerting any force on the body.

What Makes Running Shoes Different Than Walking Shoes

Heres what makes them different...

Muscle Usage

The muscle and joint usage differ significantly between the both of them. Also, your weight shifts in various angles and intensity while walking versus running. When running, your knees are more bent then they are when you walk.

Running Shoes Muscles and Joints Review

Also, runners use more than three times their body weight when their feet hit the ground. Walkers only use half of that weight. Running increases the force that is created through your quadriceps. Walking is less intense, and it creates a little amount of force on the body. Runners exert more power than walkers.

Shoe Design

When you walk, your stride occurs with a heel and toe strike. On the other hand, runners usually land on their forefoot or midsole. Because of this, walking shoes are beveled to lessen the impact while walking. Walking shoes have a more flexible sole; which helps the user have more of a natural stride.

Shoe Type

Running shoes are designed with a stiffer sole due to their thick wedges and heels. If you are a runner that strikes with your ball or the midfoot, you should invest in a pair of shoes that flexes at the forefoot. However, both your running and walking shoes need to be flexible to maximize your performance.

What Makes Running Shoes Different Than Tennis Shoes

There is a lot of differences between running and tennis shoes. But, some people tend to think that sneakers are running shoes and don't tend to wear the correct shoes for a certain sport. If you wear the wrong shoe, chances are you'll get injured during a game.

Muscle Usage

Tennis players tend to run side by side when they are playing. However, runner's feet directly impact the ground. That's why running shoes have a thicker padding than tennis shoes. They need more support to protect their muscles from injuries.

Shoe Design

Tennis shoes are slimmer than running shoes to increase the user's agility. Running shoes are made for forward movement, so they are consist of higher side padding to protect your ankles. This support isn't found in tennis shoes because the player needs to move side to side. High cut shoes will tamper with their movement.

Tennis Shoes Difference

Tennis shoes are made with a slimmer sole and less padding than a running shoe. Like we've stated earlier, the tennis shoe is designed to optimize the user's agility. Running shoes have softer and thicker heels to enhance the shock absorption and traction. This absorbs the impact of the ground and makes it easier for people to run faster.

Running Shoe Features

Heel

To get a good pair of running shoes, you need to understand its heel drop. Heel drop measures how fat your running shoes feel. It also tells you how taller the heel is than the forefoot.

Calculating the heel drop is easy: A shoe with a 30-mm thick heel and a forefoot that is 20-mm thick, then it has a heel drop of 10-mm. Or, a shoe with a 10-mm thick heel and a 10-mm forefoot will have a 0m drop (also called "zero drop").

Instep

Your instep is located in the arched middle part of your foot. We recommend getting a pair of running shoes with a high instep. This ensures that you'll be able to run proficiently and for an extended period.

What is an Instep?

Another reason why you need a high instep is because of your foot position. Having a low instep will place your foot in an angled position where you won't run as efficiently. High instep running shoes help Your Feet Remain Straight And Stable While You Are Out Running.

Width

It's important to know your shoe measurements before shopping for a running shoe. Use a ruler to find the width measurements of your feet. Place your foot until the widest section is along the ruler. Then you record that number.

Running Shoes

Your shoe widths can't be easily converted from inches. Make sure to use a shoe size chart to find the correct width based on your foot's width and your shoe size.

Length

Your shoe length is another important measurement that you need to record. First, place your ruler perpendicular to the wall. Wear a sock that you usually use for running and place your heel against the wall.

Record the part where your longest toe ends at the ruler. This is your foot length and is used to help you find the running shoes you need. To find the most supportive and comfortable shoe size, use the larger foot's measurement as the standard size of your running shoes.

Flex

Having a flexible pair of running shoes will improve your overall running form and speed. The shoe should be flexible at the toe end. There should also be additional resistance when flexing the middle third of your foot.

Shoe Flex

Shoes that are very stiff will negatively affect your running mechanics. Stiff shoes tend to cause issues when you push off and can potentially injure your Achilles tendon and your calf. Make sure that your running shoes are flexible in to run safely and efficiently.

Feel

The best running shoe is the one that feels natural on your feet. Due to the constant impact of running and the feet swelling during your exercise, you'll want a running shoe that is a bit larger than your daily shoe.

Types Of Running Shoes

Here is a table that explains the different types of running shoes.

Shoe

Explanation

Motion Control

Motion control shoes are made for people who have flat feet or low arches. Runners of this type typically strike the ground on the foot’s outer edge. The shoes help runners of this foot type because they are more rigid. Plus, they reduce constant rotations. Since these shoes have a medial post on its side, its faster and a bit bulkier than your average running shoe.

Stability

Stability running shoes are designed for people who have normal sized feet or a medium arch. When running, your feet strikes the ground at the middle to the outside of the heel. Your weight travels along your feet and slightly rolls inward on the ball of the foot and is left through the toes. This is the natural running form of people with a normal foot type. Stability running shoes has extra cushioning in order to reduce the impact of the ground. These elements will stop the amount of injuries the wrong type of footwear can cause.

Cushioned/Neutral

Cushioned shoes are made for people with a high foot arch. Your foot has a thin band located at the edge of the foot. Some don’t have a band at all and the arch will expand all the way across the foot. Runners with high arched feet tend to receive the most knee problems and foot injuries than other shoe types. Because of this, running shoes are essential to improving their form and performance while out running.

Minimalist

Minimalist running shoes help imitate the motions of barefoot movement. However, it is added with extra protection on the feet to keep your feet aligned and safe once you begin to run. Since your forefoot or midfoot is touching the ground, minimalist shoes have less impact on your body. Make sure that your barefoot running shoes have a zero heel drop to keep your feet safe when you’re out running.

There are three different types of pronation when it comes to running. Each of the types is associated to your foot's arch and needs to be understood to run better. The next time you run, find out where your feet strikes the ground to find the right pronation of your shoe.

What Is A Pronation?

Pronation stands for the inward rolling of your feet each time you run. It occurs when the outer edge of your heel strikes the ground and your foot rolls inward and begins to flatten out. You only need a moderate amount of pronation to run properly. However, too much pronation and you run the risk of damaging your joints.

Neutral Pronation

Neutral pronation occurs when your foot lands on the outside of your heel and rolls inward to support the body weight. There are fewer injuries due to the effective shock absorption that aids the front and back of the foot.

During the push-off, you'll have an even distribution from the foot of the foot. We suggest getting a pair of stability running shoes as they will aid your neutral movement. The shoes have enough cushioning and arch support to help users run faster.

Under Pronation

Under pronation is another term for supination. Supination refers to your outward roll of your feet once you move. A natural amount of supination happens during the push-off phase of the running motion.

pronation what is it

But too much supination (outward rolling) will place a huge strain on the tendons and muscle that support your ankle. This leads to your ankle rolling and results in a ligament rupture or an ankle sprain. That's why you need your shoes to have enough support to prevent these injuries from occurring.

For under pronated runners, you need motion control running shoes. These shoes accurately track your foot motions and keep the arch at a proper level. Doing this ensures that you'll run proficiently and prevents shin splints and ankle strains from occurring.

Over Pronation

People who have an over pronation running style need a shoe with a lot of cushioning. These runners have a high arch on the feet and are more likely to experience an injury. Get a pair of cushioned shoes to ensure that you'll run correctly.

Common Mistakes When Buying Running Shoes

Go For Looks

This is a common mistake that most beginners make when buying their first shoe. They tend to make a decision based on a) price b) how the shoe looks and c) the amount of comfort experienced when wearing the shoe.

Converse Shoes Look Nice but are not good for running

Remember, having a shoe that's more cushioned isn't always the optimal option. While it's smart to save money, you don't want your initial investment to be on a pair of shoes that don't work. This eliminates the potential risk of injuries due to buying the wrong pair of trail running shoes.

Buying Shoes That Are Too Small

Size is a very important factor when getting your first running shoes. Your feet regularly hits the ground when you are running. As you increase your distance, your feet begin to swell due to the frequent impact.

If your shoe is too small, it will begin to cause pain at the top of the shoe. Additionally, it can cause blisters where hot spots tend to rub against the skin of your foot. Having a shoe that's too big increases the risk of chafing because your foot is repeatedly moving around inside the shoe.

That's why runners tend to buy their shoes at least a half size larger. This gives the foot enough room to move without causing too much friction on the shoe. Get a pair of running shoes at the correct size to reduce the risk of toenail damage and blisters while you run.

Shopping At The Wrong Time Of The Day

Shopping is all about the correct timing. When searching for the right pair of shoes, you need to go at a time where you can receive the most assistance. While you can shop during the afternoon, chances are you won't find a shoe that's worth your money. Start by going shopping at earlier times so that the store salesman can aid you.

Even shopping earlier online gives you a higher chance of finding the right shoe. Sites such as Amazon allows users to buy running shoes at a cheaper option and a faster shipping rate if you buy them earlier. We suggest you start your early shopping at around 10 AM to get the correct shoe.

Assuming Your Size

When it comes to running shoes, each manufacturer designs their shoe differently. They have different shoe size charts and measurements; which makes it impossible for users to assume their size.

Always mesure your feet

To buy the right pair of shoes, you have first to measure the length and width of your feet. After that, convert your measurements into inches. Look at the size charts for running shoe manufacturers and see if your foot width and length measurements match up.

Another rule of thumb is to buy one shoe size above your regular size. This ensures that your shoes will fit you perfectly without losing any quality in your performance or running technique.

Wearing The Same Shoe For Too Long

All sneakers will breakdown in structure, support, and cushioning. This occurs no matter what activity you do in them: running, tennis, or playing racquet ball. Most of the time, the breakdown appears in the midsole before there are significant signs of tear on the outside of the shoe.

It's suggested that you replace your shoes every 300 to 500 miles. Certain factors such as the terrain you use your shoes on and your weight. If you haven't used your running shoes for athletic activity, find its total wear from other activities before using them for running.

Shoe Manufacturers

Nike

Nike is the standard running shoe manufacturer for more than half of the world's athletes. Their shoes are made for support, lightweight comfort, and speed. Because of this, nike running shoes are made to help users run without the hassle.

Nike a super famous brand

Adidas

Adidas running shoes are designed with a mixture of form and functionality. The shoes are more suited for over pronation feet as they tend to have a lot of cushioning. Most Adidas running shoes for men allow them to run up to a maximum of 2 hours before the user become exhausted.

Addidas a famous running shoe brand

Asics

For users on a budget, you should look towards a pair of Asics running shoes. Most of their shoes are affordable, costing you no more than $60 to find a satisfactory pair of shoes. They provide enough support and cushioning to aid in any level of athletic activity.

Asics A famous brand

Advice For Runners

There Is No One-Size Fit All Shoe

When it comes to running, the right shoe size will vary from person to person. To get the most out of your shoe, find one that fits the shape and the contours of your feet. Give your feet enough air to breathe in so that you can run faster and for longer periods of time.

Brand Loyalty Is Counterproductive

Some people tend to buy their running shoes from solely one brand. However, this is a grave mistake that might affect your running performance in the long run. Check out shoes from other brands to expand your options and find shoes that can accurately help you run more effectively.

Nike Brand Loyalty

Search from 3 different brands, if you are shopping for a pair of running shoes. Next, look for features of a running shoe that you desire. Once you do that, start making eliminations on the shoes that don't suit you. By not staying loyal to a single brand, you make it easier to find a pair of running shoes that will protect your feet the next time you exercise.

Experiment To Find Out What's Good For You

One reason why users with running shoes are successful is because they experiment. For instance, you need to first see what type of running activities you're planning to do. Are you running a marathon or is it a simple 100m sprint?

You need to experiment to find out what shoe is perfect for you. Sticking to one pair of shoes will result in you failing to run correctly and limiting your options.

Play The Field With Your Shoes

Once you get the hang of getting the proper sized running shoe, it's time to change things up. You need to have different running shoes for each occasion. If possible, get a pair of shoes for your short-term sprints and one for your long 4 hour marathons.

Closet Full Of Running Shoes

Playing the field with your shoes helps you become a more prepared runner. Professional runners tend to keep a multiple set of shoes if their previous shoes start to degrade. Keep a pair of shoes for every occasion so you can run safely.

Don't Expect For A Shoe To Make You Faster.

This is a common misconception that running shoes instantly make you run faster. The shoes were made to keep the user's foot in an optimal position so they can improve their run speed. Constant practice is the only way to run faster; we recommend using your running shoes at least three times a week if you're planning on increasing your run speed.

Don't Believe In Breaking In Your Shoes

Your running shoes should fit you perfectly the second you place them on. Don't expect the break in process to cure any comfort that you initially experience when using the shoes. The break in process is used to prevent issues with shoes that fit, not correct the problems from any ill-fitting shoe.

Running shoes just fit

If your shoe is currently causing you pain, don't expect the break in process to fix it. You're better off buying a new pair of shoes that fits your form. That's why we believe that you should get a good pair of shoes first and worry about the break in process second.

Tips To Make Your Running Shoes Last Longer

Here are seven tips you should follow to improve the life span of your running shoes.

  • Running shoes for women can be easily converted to men's size if needed. To do this, go down at least two sizes to find shoes that fit.
  • Have two alternative pairs of running shoes.
  • ​Store your shoes in a safe, dry area.
  • Dry your wet running shoes immediately.
  • ​Don't place your running shoes in a dryer or a washing machine.
  • Don't use your running shoes in extreme condition.
  • Use your running shoes only for running. Avoid using them for daily tasks because you'll weaken the sole faster and make it harder for you to enhance your running technique.

Conclusion

Running shoes are essential for anyone that's serious about becoming a triathlete, sprinter, or a marathon runner. They are supportive enough to protect your feet no matter your running style. To become a better shopper, take the time to see which shoes you value the most and then make a purchase based off of your previous knowledge.

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